Faster, more efficient New Zealand recall system implemented

By Ankush Chibber

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: New zealand

New Zealand has migrated to an industry-designed product recall and withdrawal system, which key businesses say will ensure even greater consumer protection.

The new online system, ProductRecallnz, has been developed by global supply-chain standards organisation GS1 NZ in conjunction with the New Zealand Food & Grocery Council (NZFGC), Foodstuffs, and Progressive Enterprises.

Launched on July 18, it has been trialed by Nestlé, Cadbury, DB Breweries, Fonterra Brands, Goodman Fielder, and Kimberly-Clark.

Katherine Rich, chief executive of the NZFGC, told FoodNavigator-Asia this builds on an existing food recall system that has worked well in the past.

“New Zealand has always had a clear process for undertaking food safety recalls within the food sector, overseen by the Ministry of Agriculture, now the Ministry for Primary Industries [MPI],”​ Rich said.

The existing system is a largely manual and lengthy process reliant on paper-based communication and emails and phone calls, she said.

“ProductRecallnz is a system which enables member companies to notify their trading partners faster and more accurately in the event of a recall. The more companies that join it, the more efficient and effective the system will be,”​ she said.

There are clear advantages in terms of speed and accuracy. “Where food is involved, safety is paramount, so it’s vital the process is fast and accurate,”​ she said.

Safety problems?

Food safety recalls remain infrequent in New Zealand, Rich said, with around 40 between June 2010-11.

However, even with the best production systems in place, there are times when products need to be recalled, she said.

Related topics: Business, Food safety, Oceania

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